Join us for GCRN Diesel Gala This Weekend

Preparations underway for the Diesel Gala

Join us this weekend Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd July for the Great Central Railway Nottingham Summer Diesel Gala. Starring Prototype High Speed Train power car 41001 and our matching Mk3 coaches (with Mk2a TSO also attached) along with new arrivals 33035, 45060, 47828, plus resident fleet 47292, 47765 and the return of mighty 56097, with brief appearances by E6016 (73110).

A heritage bus service will link East Midlands Parkway National Rail station with Rushcliffe Halt GCRN station. Full information including diesel gala tickets and other bus routes serving GCRN, plus full diesel gala TIMETABLE and LOCOMOTIVE ROSTER are available on the GCRN website.

Free Bus connects HST to HST

A free bus service will make this year’s Great Central Railway Nottingham Diesel Gala even easier to get to, connecting East Midlands Parkway station on the National Rail network with Rushcliffe Halt on the GCRN route. On both Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd July, the heritage bus will make three morning trips from East Midlands Parkway bringing visitors to the gala, later in the afternoon three runs will take folk back again. The bus timetable enables connections with mainline services at East Midlands Parkway and also connects with GCRN trains at Rushcliffe Halt.

The GCRN Diesel Gala features a wide range of traction hauling two rakes of coaching stock providing an hourly service between Ruddington and Loughborough High Level (no station), with trains calling and passing at Rushcliffe Halt where connections will be held between services. Prototype HST power car 41001 and our matching Mk3 coaches (with Mk2a TSO also attached) will feature along with new arrivals 33035, 45060, 47828, plus resident fleet 47292, 47765 and the return of mighty 56097, with brief appearances by E6016 (73110). All trains will have a buffet car and the 125 Group Sales Stand will also be on-board the HST. More information including diesel gala tickets, other bus routes serving GCRN, plus full diesel gala TIMETABLE and LOCOMOTIVE ROSTER are available on the GCRN website.

National Rail services calling at East Midlands Parkway include Inter-City 125 HSTs operated by East Midlands Trains. On Saturday 1st July only, subject to on-time running, this makes it possible to travel by Production High Speed Train from London St.Pancras to East Midlands Parkway, free heritage bus to Rushcliffe Halt, then enjoy riding classic diesels at the GCRN gala including regular runs by our preserved Prototype HST. On Saturday, HSTs departing from St.Pancras at 08:15, 09:15 and 10:15 have connecting buses at East Midlands Parkway. Return buses from Rushcliffe Halt on Saturday connect with the 1643, 1740 and 1840 HSTs from East Midlands Parkway back to London, making for a grand day out! Many other travel options are available, check out the East Midlands Trains website for National Rail train times and tickets. For details of Saturday EMT services booked for HST operation, refer to our HST diagrams. Please note on Sunday 2nd July there is planned engineering work on the Midland Mainline with buses replacing trains between Bedford and Leicester. This means a HST day out from London to East Midlands Parkway will not be possible on the Sunday, and all EMT HST diagrams will also be amended on this day.

Thanks to our fellow preservationists the Nottingham Area Bus Society who are also based at GCRN Ruddington, for running this free heritage bus service, donations welcome on-board. Important – Please note that all reasonable efforts will be made to maintain connections but these are not guaranteed. GCRN, Nottingham Area Bus Society and 125 Group can not be held responsible for losses resulting from missed connections.

GCRN Diesel Gala 1st & 2nd July

The Great Central Railway Nottingham 2017 Diesel Gala takes place on Saturday 1st & Sunday 2nd July with resident Prototype HST power car 41001 and 125 Group’s matching livery Mk3 coaches taking a starring role.

Confirmed visiting locomotives are 33035, 45060 and INTERCITY Swallow 47828, all of which have already arrived on-site at GCRN Ruddington. Home locos 47292 and Scotrail 47765 will also feature, plus brief appearances by electro-diesel E6016 (73110). Class 25 D7629 (25279) will be stand-by engine.

The GCRN Vacuum braked set of coaches will also be in use, enabling an hourly timetable to run with trains calling and passing at Rushcliffe Halt where connections will be held between services, enabling visitors to enjoy all of the traction on offer! All trains will have a buffet car and our Mk3 RFM catering vehicle features ‘Buffet 125’ also serving delicious hot food. The 125 Group Sales Stand will also be on-board.

Visiting GCRN by public transport? These bus routes connect GCRN with the National Rail Network: Kinchbus No.9 serves Ruddington (Business Park A60 Stop) on its way between Nottingham and Loughborough railway stations. Nottingham City Transport (NCT) Navy Line No.1 serves Rushcliffe Halt (Gypsum Works Stop) and also runs to and from Nottingham and Loughborough railway stations. In addition, on Sunday, the NCT Green Line No.10C runs between Nottingham railway station and the entrance gates of GCRN Ruddington.

More information including TIMETABLE and LOCOMOTIVE ROSTER available on the GCRN website HERE.

Farewell Bo’ness

Prototype HST 41001 meets Virgin Highland Chieftain HST at Manuel © Andy McLean

Prototype Power Car 41001 and 125 Group’s matching Mk3 coaches have been storming the Bo’ness & Kinneil Railway all weekend, entertaining enthusiasts at the Summer Diesel Gala. 125 Group is grateful to everyone at the B&KR for giving us such a friendly welcome and for hosting a great event. Special thanks to all who came along, bought tickets and rode the trains, we hope you enjoyed the screaming historic HST as much as we did!

Our High Speed Train is now heading for home base, Ruddington on the Great Central Railway (Nottingham). Traction for the mainline transit should be Michael Owen’s splendid locomotives 20205 + 20189, hauling consist 12092 + 10206 + 11074 + 41001. Below is a summary of the planned non-passenger workings with live schedule links courtesy of Realtime Trains.

Monday 25th July 2016

5M20 08+40 Bo’ness Junction Exchange Siding – York Holgate via Linlithgow, Suburban Line, Millerhill, Drem, Berwick-Upon-Tweed, Newcastle, Sunderland, Hartlepool, Eaglescliffe, Thirsk, York Avoiding Lines, arrive York Holgate 18+07. Note this movement is booked to be recessed in many loops for a great deal of time, see schedule for the full timing details. http://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/K91057/2016/07/25/advanced

Tuesday 26th July 2016

5M20 12+54 York Holgate – Hotchley Hill/Rushcliffe Halt via Milford, Pontefract Baghill, Swinton, Old Road, Chesterfield, Langley Mill, Loughborough, Leicester, Wigston North Jn (run-round/reverse), Leicester, Loughborough South Jn 18/06, booked to arrive Hotchley Hill/Rushcliffe Halt 18+38. http://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/K91057/2016/07/26/advanced

UPDATE: The class 20s are formed top and tail on the set, there is a possibility 5M20 may reverse at Loughborough South Jn at 1627 and run onto GCR(N) early missing out Leicester, subject to operating conditions at the time. 

The class 20s are then planned to part company with the HST and run light to Butterley. Power Car 41001 will then haul 11074, 10206 and 12092 as 5Z41 19+00 Hotchley Hill/Rushcliffe Halt – Ruddington.

Please note, as always, all of this information is provided in good faith but these movements, traction, consists and even routes taken can change at short notice on the day subject to operational constraints, the trains may run early or late or be cancelled.

Valenta Returns to Scotland!

41001 Crossing the Border 21st July 2016 ©125 Group

Prototype Power Car 41001 is now in Scotland, its first visit in preservation, together with 125 Group’s matching Mk3 coaches passed over the border on the ECML at Marshall Meadows at 1801 this evening. The historic HST is heading for the Bo’ness & Kinneil Railway where it will be starring in their Summer Diesel Gala this weekend. The transit is running under schedule 5S20 12+14 York Holgate Sidings – Bo’ness Junction Exchange Siding hauled by superb locomotives 20189 + 20205. Follow progress courtesy of Realtime Trains here: http://www.realtimetrains.co.uk/train/K91057/2016/07/21/advanced.

At the time of posting (2030 Thu) the convoy is running 76 minutes early passing Polmont, having been routed via Edinburgh Waverley station instead of the planned Suburban line. The train is expected to run through to Cadder Loop as booked, we can not be sure if the early running will be maintained or not.  Once at Bo’ness Junction Exchange Siding, the Class 20s will propel the train down the link line and are then expected to haul the HST to Bo’ness itself.

Join us at the B&KR Summer Diesel Gala this weekend and experience 41001’s fantastic Paxman Valenta engine, the screaming type originally fitted to all Inter-City 125s. The HST will be working passenger trains on all three days Friday 22nd, Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th July. More information, including ticket prices and a link to the special timetable and LOCOMOTIVE ROSTERS are available at the B&KR website HERE.